KT&G CEO Baek Bok-in, fourth from left, poses with chiefs of the company’s affiliates, including KGC CEO Her Chul-ho, fifth from left, at the ceremony of announcing the KT&G Group’s business ethics charter at the Courtyard Marriott Namdaemun Hotel on June 8. Photo courtesy of KT&G

Dedication to lawful and ethical management avowed

South Korea’s primary tobacco manufacturer KT&G announced on June 9 that it had declared the “KT&G Group Business Ethics Charter,” which contains standards of conduct of its affiliates.

Around 20 people took part in the proclamation ceremony at a hotel in central Seoul, including KT&G CEO Baek Bok-in and heads of the company’s seven local affiliates.

KT&G has recently revised its ethics charter to provide common standards for evaluating values through group-level guidelines.

In particular, the “Group Ethics Charter,” which underwent its third revision since its inception in 2003, is geared toward reflecting the altered business environment, such as global business expansion and reinforced ESG management, according to KT&G.

Brief for Environmental, Social, and corporate Governance, ESG is the three central factors in measuring the sustainability of a corporation or business.

Over the past few years, the initiative has emerged as an essential managerial value locally and globally.

KT&G said that the Ethics Charter was distributed in eight languages to 21 companies, including overseas corporations, as well as domestic and foreign subsidiaries.

Moving away from the legal text format, it provides a more specific and understandable code of conduct by using descriptive phrases and the addition of practically applicable examples. 

“Reinforcing ethical management is a prerequisite for a global company’s sustainable growth,” a KT&G representative said.

“By enhancing group-wide ethical management, the internal control system will be advanced, and efforts will be made to establish a global business management system.”

The publisher studied Korean history in Seoul and management of business administration in the United Kingdom. He has 20-year experiences in the media business. Kim can be reached at voc200@gmail.com or 82-2-6956-6698.